Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley just ended a press conference during which he addressed the ongoing relief efforts in the aftermath of serious flooding in the southern half of the island.
Being as self-deprecating a people – and thus easily given to derision as Trinis are – images like the one above made the rounds on social media summing up the plight of those affected by the rising waters.
What turned out to be a tense Q&A segment punctuated by hard hitting questions from reporters about the government’s perceived abandonment of flood affected citizens who are
“people who don’t know where the next meal was coming from […]”
to quote one reporter, which were in turn greeted with blunt answers from the PM about his view that
“Some people expect more assistance than they are entitled to […]”
and the reality that
“Not everyone can expect assistance, or would qualify for assistance […]”
The PM noted that some people in Southern Trinidad were happy – and he wasn’t talking about those who took part in what has been dubbed the Trinidad Flood Olympics consisting of people happily diving off rooves into flood water and subsequently frolicking in said water.
At one point the prime minister opined the following:
Are the people in flood affected areas really being snubbed by national authorities because of their race?
Agree or not (I just can’t see how it could be so), I’m sure the reaction to this comment will be very soon in coming.